Athabasca Minerals in Edmonton, Alberta has completed a technical report for its Richardson Aggregate Project, 130 kilometres north of Fort McMurray, Alberta.
The corporation is assessing the Richardson Project for its crush rock aggregate potential, which is potentially suitable for applications such as building construction, road stone, railway track blast and mortar.
The 2013 and 2014 drill campaigns show that the bedrock underlying the Richardson Project includes, from stratigraphic base to top: Precambrian crystalline basement granite, La Loche Formation sandstone and conglomerate, Devonian Contact Rapids Formation dolomitic silty shale, and a finely crystalline dolomite unit known as the Winnipegosis Formation.
The bedrock is overlain by a layer of Quaternary surficial deposits that range in thickness from 18-metres to 64.9m (average 35.7m) and is comprised largely of unconsolidated glaciofluvial sand and boulders.
The Winnipegosis Formation dolostone is the primary focus of the Richardson Resource Estimate due to the strength and uniformity in the drill-tested resource estimate area. The thickness of the Winnipegosis Formation varies from 8.3m to 47.9m (average 39.5m) and is comprised largely of competent, uniform, light brown dolomite.
The Richardson Resource Estimate describes an initial inferred resource estimate of 683 million tonnes of aggregate material situated in the favourable Winnipegosis Formation. The inferred crush rock aggregate resource lies beneath an estimated 221 million cubic metres of unconsolidated glaciofluvial sand and boulders (overburden).
A secondary objective of the Richardson Resource Estimate includes an aggregate assessment of the basement granite, intended mainly towards future exploration strategies by the Corporation. The drilling and coring strategy was to penetrate through the entire Winnipegosis Formation and terminate each drillhole ten metres into the Precambrian basement granite.
A single drillhole cored a larger section of granite (44.5m) to test its uniformity and crush rock aggregate potential at depth. The granite comprised light-blue grey coarse-grained weakly foliated granite that is fairly consistent throughout the area of drilling. The Richardson Resource Estimate describes a potential granite deposit of approximately 165 million tonnes in the resource area.
The basement granite is separated from the overlying Winnipegosis Formation by approximately 77 million cubic metres of La Loche Formation sandstone and conglomerate and Contact Rapids Formation dolomitic silty shale.